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Six Things You Need to Know About Summer Heat and Your Car
MIAMI VALLEY -- It's the time of year the pavement gets so hot you'd swear your tires could melt. So what can you do to keep yourself and your care safe and operational when summer temperatures spike? A local AAA office is offering up some tips.
"You just never know at any time on a hot day like that you can get stranded for a number of reasons," said AAA Fleet Supervisor Chris Overbeck. "And if you don't have the proper equipment to keep you safe it isn't going to help."
If you remember one tip this summer, Overbeck says its to make sure you have plenty of water bottles. Keep at least five per person traveling in your car, so you can stay hydrated if you become stranded.
Additional tips from AAA:
- If traffic is not moving do not use the accessory setting to listen to the radio, or use any other devices that could drain the car battery.
- While running the air conditioner drivers should keep an eye on the dash and if the vehicle starts to overheat shut it off immediately and open the hood to allow the engine to cool off. The vehicle may need to be off for a minimum of 45 minutes. When restarting the vehicle leave the hood open.
- If you cannot operate the vehicle's air conditioning open windows on both sides of the car to cross ventilate.
- Carry a windshield sun shade in your vehicle to provide some shade from the sun.
- Staying in your vehicle is usually the safest option. If, however, the heat becomes too much and traffic shows no signs of moving, consider seeking shelter in the shade. If there are trees or an overpass nearby that would provide shade take a break and give your body time to cool off.
"Bottom line is you need to take care of yourself, take care of number one and you never know how long it's going to take to get help," Overbeck said.
He also warns of temperatures inside cars, saying in "high construction zones there tends to be more traffic jams, and your car is going to be 20 to 30 degrees warmer inside than it is outside."
Drivers also should make sure they have enough coolant in their car.
Keep an eye on your tires in this heat. Driving on under-inflated tires not only affects the handling and braking of a vehicle, it can also cause tires to overheat and increase the likelihood of a blowout. This problem becomes even more of a concern when road temperatures are extremely high.
If your car battery is more than three years old, it is a good idea to have it tested to see how much longer it will last.
To beat the heat, here are a few cooling centers around the Miami Valley:
Kettering Recreation Center
2600 Glenngary Dr.
Vandalia Recreation Center
1111 Stonequarry Rd
Greater Dayton RTA
South: 2730 Lyons Rd
North: 2075 Shiloh Springs Rd
West: Westown Shopping Ctr.
Downtown: Wright Stop Plaza, 4 South Main St.
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